Abstract

Rayleigh scattering in optical fibers has the potential to degrade the performance of low-noise opto-electronic systems. In this Letter, we measure the Rayleigh gain spectrum of optical fibers. Our data show the gain bandwidth and the offset frequency of the Rayleigh gain peak. Both the gain bandwidth and the peak frequency are 3 orders of magnitude lower than the corresponding values for bulk silica. Our data suggest that the narrower gain bandwidth and frequency shift that we observe are due to guided entropy modes in the fiber. This effect is fundamental and will be present in any medium in which light is guided so that transverse intensity gradients exist.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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